No kidding. When I first saw him I knew that he was going to change my life. I had no idea how, but I knew he would, that was February 2001.
December 2003 I gave birth to our son.
That was the day that he officially fell in love with me, and for the first time in thirty years, he was happy. Can you believe that? He’d never known happiness in three decades of “living”.
Witnessing the intensity of labor,
nearly losing consciousness as the epidural was being given,
watching the debut of our son,
cutting the umbilical cord and learning that our baby will indeed be his namesake,
collectively, that allowed him to finally know what it felt like to be happy. If only momentarily and in spurts over the next eight years, he’d finally have his own personal stories of happiness to reflect upon.
Our son would be his first and only (biological) child.
He and I would be the reasons why love and happiness were able to exist in such a damage, hurt and overly guarded space.
For that, we’re eternally grateful.
Many conversations were exchanged between he and I about love and happiness, from the time our son was born up until four days before he perished.
It’s obvious to everyone who knows us, that I loved him from early on and he loved me and our child up until the very end.
A rather unique situation for me. One that I’m sure I’ll never have again.
Last words to me: I’ll always love you for what you’ve given me…
Last words to our son: Always remember your daddy loves you. Alright? Love ya’ boy!
I’ve had six months to assess, reassess and asses all over again, the relationship that he and I had. It’s completely clear how he changed my life.
I’m able to confirm that I’ve never had any love for anyone (outside of my children, of course!) other than him.
That was the first and only time that I’ve loved someone.
But what good are my words and acknowledging these truths, when he’s not here to hear them?
It’s too late now.
For the last few weeks, one of my good girlfriends has been relentlessly pushing for me to try online dating. “You need to meet some new people!” Is what she tells me. That’s immediately followed by, “Just give it a try! It’s so fun!” Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah! My response is always, “Nah! That’s not for me. I’ll just focus on the relationship that I’m in.” Blah, blah, blah, blah! Now my girlfriend, she’s very spontaneous and I’m a watcher. She’ll just go for it. Whereas with me, it takes a long time (sometimes years) before I can develop a meaningful relationship of any kind and with ANYone. That includes friendships, coworkers, associates, neighbors, etc. I’ve always been this way, but I’m even more like this because of the fact that I have children. I’m very cautious as to who I allow into my space because whatever happens (be it good or bad) affects me and the four of them. Getting back to the topic of online dating, not that I was ever consciously considering it in the least bit, but why did I hear of three online dating nightmares within two days? (head cocked to the side). One lady wound up with a deranged stalker on her hands, another was out $7,000 and the last woman, was swindled out of her newborn baby. I guess if my subconscious was in any way reconsidering and rehashing the idea of giving online dating a try, these back-to-back-to-back incidences put a halt to that! Hearing those stories assured me that I’ve made the best decision. I’m sure there’s many success stories when it comes to online dating, and you can meet a crazy just about anywhere these days. You don’t have to go online to run across that problem. My overall point is, I’m going to stick to what and who I (already) know. It works for me. Albeit, my current relationship has transitioned into being a long distance one, it’s still mines and it’s working (at least today it is). As for online dating and this almost single mama, I’ll just leave that for those who are more optimistic than I. Happy Dating!
Yesterday evening I discovered my second strand of white hair. I was so shocked to see it, that I accidentally dislodged it from my head. After looking at it for a few seconds I chucked it away. Long after analyzing the single strand of white hair I found myself feeling some kind of way. That single strand of short white hair forced me to realize that I’m changing. Each and every day, I’m changing. With every passing moment and second, I am changing. Not just aging, but I’m changing. I’m changing from this person that I’ve known for so long to someone brand new. What I’m wondering is, do I have the right? Do I have the right to change and evolve into someone new, someone with different expectations, perspectives and perceptions? Is it fair to undergo this extreme metamorphosis, then expect those who’ve been a long-term part of my life, to get in line with the new me?
As I’m getting older, I’m starting to change into this woman, whom I’ve never wanted any part of before. I’m starting to be less hard and rough around the edges, and more soft, sweet and motherly. I’m less impatient and temperamental. I’m beginning to desire affection and love, when before I would push that form of closeness away. Having a relationship with my soul mate, and having him here with me at the end of the day seems to have become one of my top priorities. The question that I keep coming back to is, do I have the right to ask and/or require something different from him, after having our relationship work so well after all of these years? Is it selfish of me to change things up right smack dab in the middle of our adventure together, especially when this is and has been working so well for us? Well, just as I keep being bombarded by the same questions I also keep arriving at the same conclusion, change is inevitable. In lots of cases, there’s no control over change, for instance my white strands of hair, or my children growing into their own independence. We don’t get a whole lot of say-so when it comes to change, yet it’s bound to happen, and we have no choice other than to accept it.
Though it’s different from my usual norm, I’m starting to embrace the changes that are going on with my body, in my mind, and with my heart…..I might as well, seeing that they’re going to happen with or without my blessing. I’m learning to savour the taste of unforeseen circumstances, in fact I’m developing an acquired palette for them.
I want what I want, and I still am who I am…while constantly evolving!
…..and YES! I have every right!
PEACE and Serenity
When it came to making the decision to transport my children from Michigan down to Houston, I had absolutely no doubt that I was making the best decision for them and myself. I did take into consideration the fact that we would be far away from all of our family and friends, and all that we’ve ever known. In order to come to grips with the idea of relocating, it was necessary for me to take off my “Mariann” hat and jump into “Mommy” mode. In the end, the pros of moving overwhelmingly outweighed the cons of staying put in Detroit. It was absolutely a NO BRAINER! Instead of doing what would be easier, less messy and more convenient, I opted to place the well-being of my children ahead of all else, and moving became my official number one, atop my neverending list of things to do.
Littlefield was the only permanent address that I ever had in Michigan. It was the home, block and neighborhood where my brother and I grew up. It was the house where I bought all four of my children to from the hospital. It’s the place where my only friends reside. Detroit is where I left someone, who I could’ve seen myself possibly being with for the rest of this life (that’s huge for this self-dubbed loner). I sacrificed all that I’m comfortable and familiar with, because that’s what a mother does.
We’ve been here for three weeks and it’s been the best consistent three weeks that I’ve known in a long time. It’s been filled with a calm, peace, easy breathing, grounding, relaxation and happiness. My decision has caused lots of tears (mainly happy ones!) to be shed and I’ve even been referred to as being “selfish”, admittedly that one had been bothering me, that is until I came to grips with the fact that it’s okay and sometimes even necessary to be selfish, especially when you’re doing it for all the right reasons!